The Three Main Challenges Women Entrepreneurs Face

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The number of women entrepreneurs is growing. In the UK, for example, there’s been a 45% increase in women starting their own businesses since 2006. Despite this, however, men are more likely to set up on their own, and more likely to believe they’ll succeed.

Research shows that female entrepreneurs are less likely to believe in their abilities. They’re also more likely to face challenges their male counterparts don’t. Unfortunately, these challenges show that, while there are more women in leadership roles, equity still hasn’t been achieved.

Work/Life Balance


Flexibility is critical for many women starting their own business. As the majority of caring responsibilities fall on women, this is especially true for working mothers needing a work/life balance.  Working for themselves lets them build a business that works for them. Unfortunately, this isn’t always seen as a positive, despite research showing women-led firms provide a better return on investment than those run solely by men.

Perception


In the past, women felt they had to adopt ‘typical’ male behaviors to be taken seriously. Today, female entrepreneurs such as Sherrie Lacey, Founding Partner of Zealous Health Supplements as well as Biologic Luminescence, and Michelle Mone, founder of Ultimo, have shown women don’t have to behave this way. They’re succeeding on their own terms by being themselves, acting as role models and challenging views on women entrepreneurs.

Confidence


Seeing other women succeed creates a sense of empowerment amongst female entrepreneurs, giving them the determination to succeed. Learning from other women is vital here. Sherrie Lacey, for example, has a blog and books on leadership. Attending events and building networks of women who support each other is also essential. There’s nothing more powerful or more likely to help build confidence than having one woman tell another she can succeed.

 

 
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Sherrie Lacey

Writer, Business Women

Sherrie Fluer De Lacey is a doctoral student, currently studying a PhD in International Business at the University of Zurich, Switzerland. She previously worked in the City of London as an analyst, developing proprietary trading algorithms, helping to raise money and broker deals following this, she embarked on extensive research and with collaboration Sherrie has put together several books to share the findings of this academic research more widely.

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